Background Unintentional injury is the leading killer of children in the United States, and nonfatal injuries result in significant physical and emotional injury. Few interventions to reduce child injuries have been effective, potentially due to their primarily didactic nature. Behaviorally focused interventions are needed. SafeCare is a behavioural intervention that is effective for treating child abuse and neglect. It contains a home hazard reduction module that is likely to be effective in reducing child injuries; however, its effect on injuries has not been examined.
Objectives This pilot study used an RCT design to examine whether the home safety module of SafeCare reduced home hazards and unintentional injuries among at-risk children ages 1–3.
Methods SafeCare was compared to Services as Usual among 20 families receiving home visiting services from a consortium. Self-reports of minor injuries and observations of home hazards were conducted at pre-test, post-test, and 4 week follow-up.
Preliminary Results Preliminary results among this low-income sample have found high numbers of hazards at pre-test (average of 55.3 hazards per family). Pre-test rates of minor unintentional injuries have been moderate (average of 2.14 per 2 week period). ANCOVA analyses will compare post-test and follow-up frequencies of hazards and child injuries for the control versus treatment group.
Conclusions Study results will indicate whether a home-based behavioural skills parent training can reduce unintentional injuries among low-income and at-risk children.
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